How many times did you want to start a conversation but you didn’t know how to? Well, in these cases, the best solution is to start by talking about weather! For this reason we decided to do a lesson which is completely focused on how to talk about weather in Italian!
Vocabulary related to WEATHER PHENOMENA in Italian
How to ASK FOR information about weather in Italian
To start, the typical question to ask to someone in order to know what the weather is like where they are is: CHE TEMPO FA? (What’s the weather like?)
Of course, we can also ask CHE TEMPO FACEVA (in the past) or CHE TEMPO FARÀ (in the future)!
How to GIVE information about weather in Italian
We have different possibilities to answer this question:
1) FA / FACEVA / FARÀ + adjective only with some adjectives, the most general ones)
Fa caldo / freddo (It’s warm / cold)
Fa bel / cattivo / brutto tempo (Weather is nice / bad)
These sentences are perfect to start a conversation, especially if you add a bit of emphasis!
Mamma mia che brutto tempo fa oggi! (Oh my God, what a bad weather it is today!)
Finalmente fa caldo: non se ne poteva più del freddo! (Finally it’s warm: I couldn’t stand the cold weather anymore!)
2) È + adjective (specific for weather)
Oggi è piovoso! (Today it’s rainy!)
3) C’È / CI SONO + noun
C’è la pioggia! (There is rain!)
Piove! (It rains!)
Sta piovendo! (It’s raining!)
Having said that, let’s see now all the nouns, adjectives, verbs and expression that we use to describe weather divided by seasons!
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In Italy, winter is usually very cold, therefore we can say that Italian winter is gelido (freezing)! Si gela (It’s freezing)!
Sometimes it’s also nevoso (snowy), there’s la neve (snow), that is white soft grains falling down from the sky. In the mountains, not only nevica (it snows), but there is often una bufera di neve or tormenta (blizzard).
But winter is above all piovoso (rainy), there’s la pioggia (rain). If piove (it rains) very hard, we’ll say there’s un acquazzone (downpour). Some days there’s a terrible rain, there are lampi and tuoni (lightnings and thunders), in these cases we’ll say that weather is burrascoso or tempestoso (stormy), and that, therefore, there’s un temporale (or una burrasca and una tempesta – a storm).
When the storm ends, there’s l’arcobaleno (rainbow)! If ice cubes fall from the sky, there’s la grandine (hail), cioè grandina (it hails).
In winter, there’s usually a lot of vento (wind), it’s ventoso (windy).
There are no uragani (hurricanes) in Italy, that is those storms with very strong wind and rain that often affect the USA. In Italy, instead, there are trombe d’aria (whirlwind), that is very strong wind in whirls.
EXPRESSIONS for Winter:
Fa un freddo cane! / Si muore di freddo!– It’s cold as hell!
Ho la pelle d’oca! – I’m getting goose bumps!
Piove a catinelle / a dirotto! – It’s pouring rain! / It’s raining cats and dogs!
In Spring, weather is generally sereno or limpido (clear), the sky is blue. Clearly, it can also be soleggiato (sunny): there’s il sole (sun) or the sun splende (shines)!
If the temperature is neither high nor low, then it’s mite (mild)! When it didn’t rain and air isn’t heavy, we’ll say that it’s secco (dry). But the best Spring day is that in which there’s a light and gentle brezza (breeze)!
EXPRESSION for Spring:
C’è un sole che spacca le pietre! – The sunshine is hot enough to fry eggs!
In Summer it’s often umido (wet)… there’s l’umidità (humidity)! When it’s really warm, we generally say it’s torrido or afoso (sweltering), there’s a terrible afa (mugginess)! Fortunately, however, in Summer it’s also possible prendere il sole (to sunbathe) and therefore abbronzarsi (to suntan) and hopefully not ustionarsi (to get burned)…
EXPRESSIONS for Summer:
Prendere la tintarella – to get a tan
Prendere un’insolazione – to get a sunstroke
Autumn is generally nebbioso (foggy), there’s la nebbia (fog). The wind blows hard and it’s often nuvoloso (cloudy), there are le nuvole (clouds).
There is not heavy rain, but pioviggina (it’s drizzling), that is there’s una pioggia leggera (a light rain).
EXPRESSION for Autumn:
Cielo a pecorelle – mackerel sky
According to the saying: Cielo a pecorelle, pioggia a catinelle! – so if you see mackerel sky, take the umbrella!
What’s the weather like where you are?
Don’t miss the idioms related to the weather phenomena!
Let’s see if you’ve mastered the contents of this class. Have a go at completing the exercises!